Evan Mobley broke a fourth-quarter tie with two of his 17 points and added a three-point play shortly thereafter Monday night as the Cleveland Cavaliers grabbed a late double-figure lead and held on to beat the host Sacramento Kings 109-108 in a battle of two teams playing for a second consecutive night.
Kevin Love and Cedi Osman came off the bench and scored 18 and 15 points, respectively, to complement Jarrett Allen's 18, Mobley's 17, Lauri Markkanen's 15 and Darius Garland's 12 for Cleveland. The Cavaliers were playing their third game in four nights to begin a Western swing, and they won two of them.
Tyrese Haliburton had a game-high 21 points and Buddy Hield added 19 to pace the Kings, whose fifth consecutive loss wasn't decided until De'Aaron Fox misfired on a potential game-winning, step-back jumper shortly before the final horn.
After the Kings had rallied from a 12-point deficit midway through the third quarter to draw even at 97-all on a Chimezie Metu 3-pointer with 5:41 to play, Mobley immediately countered with his go-ahead hoop off a Garland assist to ignite a temporary Cavaliers pull-away.
Garland buried a jumper, Allen slammed home a dunk, Mobley added his three-point play and Markkanen sank a 3-pointer as part of a 12-2 flurry that seemingly broke the game open at 109-99 with just 2:34 to play.
But the Kings rallied, getting a 3-pointer from Harrison Barnes, dunks by Neemias Queta and Haliburton and two free throws from Fox with 31.9 seconds to go to get within 109-108.
Fox then stole the ball from Mobley and, following a timeout, got a shot at being the hero but missed the mark.
Allen collected a game-high 17 rebounds, while Garland likewise completed a double-double with a game-high 11 assists for the Cavaliers, who swept their two-game season series with the Kings.
Barnes finished with 14 points, Metu 13, Fox 12 and Queta 11 for Sacramento, which used 14-for-30 accuracy on 3-pointers, including 5-for-8 by Hield, to give itself a shot.
Haliburton led the Kings with eight assists, while Marvin Bagley III and Alex Len shared team-high rebound honors with 10 apiece.
With Mobley and Allen each hitting 8 of 14 from the floor, the Cavaliers outshot the hosts 49.4 percent to 42.9 percent.
--Field Level Media